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Archive for July 23, 2013

Plain cigarette packs ‘encourage smokers to quit’

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Plain packaging of cigarettes was introduced in Australia last December

Selling cigarettes in unbranded packs seems to make tobacco less appealing and encourages smokers to quit, suggests a study.

The work comes from Australia – the first country to introduce plain packaging.

The BMJ Open research looked at the impact of the policy on 536 smokers in the state of Victoria.

The findings come days after ministers were criticised for putting on hold a plan to impose plain packs in England.

Downing Street denied the Tories’ election strategist, Lynton Crosby, had been responsible for the delay to plain packaging.

Mr Crosby’s links with alcohol and tobacco companies have been called into question by some MPs.

Defending the decision to delay, Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt said the government wanted more time to see how the policy had worked in Australia.

The BMJ Open study gives an early indication of precisely this.

Researchers polled a sample of smokers during November 2012 when plain packs were already available in the run up to the country-wide introduction of the legislation.

Almost three out of four (72.3%) were smoking cigarettes from plain packs while the remainder (27.7%) were still using branded packs with smaller health warnings.

Compared with branded pack smokers, smokers using plain packs were 66% more likely to think their cigarettes were poorer quality than a year ago and they were 70% more likely to say they found them less satisfying.

They were also 81% more likely to have thought about quitting at least once a day during the previous week.

And plain pack smokers were 51% more likely to back the plain pack policy than were brand pack smokers.

Simon Clark, director of the smokers’ group Forest, said the study offered “no credible evidence” to suggest that plain packaging will reduce smoking rates.

“The research, which was carried out in November 2012, before plain packaging was introduced, is based on highly subjective responses to questions about the perceived quality of cigarettes and the satisfaction consumers derive from smoking cigarettes sold in standard packs.

“There is no evidence that the sale or consumption of cigarettes has fallen in Australia since plain packs were introduced in December.”

Kate Alley of Cancer Research UK disagreed, saying: “When cigarettes aren’t disguised by flashy packaging and carefully crafted branding, smokers see them for what they are – a lethal product which kills half of its long term users.”

She said ministers should “stop stalling” and introduce standardised packs in the UK as soon as possible, adding that 85% of the British public wanted government action to reduce the number of children who smoke.

Simon Gillespie, of the British Heart Foundation, said: “These are clear-cut findings about how existing smokers have reacted to the changes in Australia. Westminster has absolutely no excuse for delaying legislation to introduce standardised packaging.”

A Department of Health spokeswoman said: “We take very seriously the potential for standardised packaging to reduce smoking rates, but in light of the differing views, we have decided to wait until the emerging impact of the decision in Australia can be measured, and then we will make a decision in England.

“This decision is an important one and whilst we keep it under review, we’ll be continuing to implement our existing plan to reduce smoking rates through ending the display of tobacco in all shops, running national behaviour change campaigns to encourage smokers to quit and through supporting local authorities to provide effective stop smoking services.”

“When cigarettes aren’t disguised by flashy packaging and carefully crafted branding, smokers see them for what they are – a lethal product which kills half of its long term users”

Kate AlleyCancer Research UK’s tobacco policy manager

via BBC News – Plain cigarette packs ‘encourage smokers to quit’.

Scottish skin cancer survival rates at all-time high

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Scotland’s skin cancer survival rates have improved dramatically over the past 30 years

 

Eight out of 10 men and nine out of 10 women diagnosed with the most dangerous form of skin cancer will now survive the disease, according to a new report.

Cancer Research UK said 30 years ago only 58% of men and 78% of women beat the disease.

Scotland’s improved survival rates are linked to better treatment, early diagnosis and awareness of the symptoms, the charity said.

Its latest poster campaign highlights progress but urges more to be done.

Over the summer, it has asked the public to help by entering local fundraising events, returning sponsorship money for Race for Life, or donating goods to one of their charity shops.

Supporters’ generosity

Dr Tim Crook, from the University of Dundee, who treats melanoma and works on Cancer Research UK projects, said: “We’ve come a long way in the fight against skin cancer and that’s largely down to the generosity of supporters who have funded research to help us better understand the disease and find new ways of beating it.

“Eight out of 10 is great, but obviously that means we still need to do more for the two out of 10 where things don’t look so good.”

He said research from Cancer Research UK-funded laboratories had allowed the development of drugs like Vemurafenib, which he said could give patients with advanced melanoma “valuable extra months”.

Cancer Research UK’s Linda Summerhayes said its research was also behind the discovery that faults in a gene called BRAF contribute to over half of all cases of malignant melanoma.

“Since then, our scientists have led efforts to develop drugs that target this gene,” she said.

“Skin cancer is one of the fastest rising cancers in the UK, which is likely to be down to our sunbathing habits and the introduction of cheap package holidays in previous decades.”

‘Very lucky’

Long term survivor of skin cancer, Caroline Begg, of Glasgow, was diagnosed with malignant melanoma in 2006, when she was 26-years-old after using sunbeds regularly.

The 33-year-old mother-of-two said: “I was very lucky that my cancer was caught early. I think going to the doctor early and the treatment I received saved my life.

“Now I am the most cautious person in the sun and would never ever use a sunbed.

“I would urge everyone to take care so they don’t have to go through the trauma I did.”

In Scotland, about 1,200 people are diagnosed with malignant melanoma every year – more than three people per day.

via BBC News – Scottish skin cancer survival rates at all-time high.

Breakfast linked to ‘healthy heart’

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Could a bowl of cereal help your heart?

 

People should eat breakfast to keep their hearts in good condition, according to researchers in the US.

Their study of 27,000 men, in the journal Circulation, showed those skipping breakfast were at a greater risk of heart problems.

The team at the Harvard School of Public Health said missing the meal put an “extra strain” on the body.

The British Heart Foundation said breakfast helped people resist sugary snacks before lunch.

The men, aged 45-82, were studied for 16 years. During that time there were more than 1,500 heart attacks or cases of fatal heart failure.

However, people who skipped breakfast were 27% more likely to have heart problems than those who started the day with a meal. The researchers adjusted for other lifestyle risk factors such as smoking and exercise.

Researcher, Dr Leah Cahill told the BBC: “The take-home message is eat in the morning when you wake up, preferably within an hour.

“The results show that something is better than nothing, but it’s always better to have something healthy and balanced.”

She said the timing of the meal seemed to be key and waiting until lunch rather than “breaking fast” may be straining the body over time.

She said this could be increasing the risk of high blood pressure, obesity and diabetes which could in turn damage the heart.

“Don’t skip breakfast,” Dr Cahill concluded.

Victoria Taylor, a dietitian with the British Heart Foundation, said: “These researchers only looked at men aged over 45, so we would need to see further research to confirm that breakfast has the same impact on the heart health of other groups of people.

“What we do know is that a healthy and filling breakfast can make that mid-morning biscuit less tempting, as well as giving you another opportunity to widen the variety of foods in your diet.

“Wholegrain toast, or cereals like porridge with low fat milk are a good way to start the day. Try a sliced banana or dried fruit on top and you’ll be on your way to five-a-day before you’ve even left the house.”

via BBC News – Breakfast linked to ‘healthy heart’.

Call to ban smoking on beaches stirs French

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Parisians have been relaxing on temporary beaches along the Seine

A call by France’s health minister for local authorities to ban smoking in parks and on beaches has sparked debate as a heat wave grips the country.

Marisol Touraine told the Journal du Dimanche newspaper she wanted to see more tobacco-free zones, to protect children’s health.

The Socialist minister said she hoped smoking would also be banned outside schools and on university campuses.

Smoke-free beaches have appeared in some French resorts in recent years.

The town of La Ciotat, near Marseille on the Mediterranean coast, was among the first to create such a beach in 2011, introducing a fine of 38 euros (£33; $50) for offenders.

Similar steps have been taken elsewhere in the world, notably in New York City, which prohibited smoking on beaches and in parks the same year.

‘Much cleaner now’

Ms Touraine said: “Is it normal for mothers, fathers or nannies to smoke in a public park where children play? I don’t think so. Tobacco kills…”

Her remarks were picked up by other newspapers, generating lively debates online.

Many readers welcomed the minister’s proposal, with comments like “Anything that makes smokers see sense is good”, but some accused the government of seeking to encroach on civil liberties.

One reader of Le Figaro, named only as Morpain, joked in an open letter to Ms Touraine that, given the continuing issue of mortality in the French population, she should ban childbirth in France “until the problem of eternal life is solved by scientific means”.

A reporter for La Croix newspaper who visited La Ciotat’s smoke-free Lumiere Beach found evidence that the ban was popular with smokers and non-smokers alike.

She interviewed a mother named Virginie smoking outside the entrance while her daughter played in the sand.

“My daughter used to dig up cigarette butts,” the 35-year-old said. “Today the beach is much cleaner. And moving away to have a smoke is less embarrassing now since we already do it in bars and restaurants.”

Active smoking is the prime cause of avoidable mortality in France and is regarded as being responsible for 90% of lung cancer cases and 73,000 premature deaths each year, according to the country’s National Institute for Prevention and Health Education.

With temperatures reaching 33C in Paris and 37C on the French Riviera on Monday, people have been flocking to beaches and parks to cool off.

via BBC News – Call to ban smoking on beaches stirs French.

喀一聲嘴歪了!顳顎關節症候群作祟

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發現嘴巴張不開,勉強張開了又合不起來?小心是壓力大或姿勢不良造成的顳顎關節症候群!(攝影/黃志文)

 

「喀!」發現嘴巴張不開,勉強張開了又合不起來,小心是壓力大或姿勢不良造成的顳顎關節症候群!不僅吃東西時疼痛難耐,嚴重的話,可能連刷牙時牙刷都伸不進嘴裡,由於顳顎關節症非單一原因造成,建議可合併牙科與復健科治療。

張大嘴巴竟無法超過3指半的寬度,很多人第一時間會以為是下巴脫臼,陸續看了骨科、內科、神經科、中醫、甚至跌打傷科,都沒有進展,後來轉診到牙科,才發現是罹患現代人的文明病,顳顎關節症候群。

顳顎關節屬耳朵前面的關節,由顳骨與下顎骨部分關節所組成,顳顎關節症候群患者最明顯的症狀就是張口時會有「喀喀」聲響,嚴重者顏面肌肉痠痛、耳朵疼痛甚至嘴巴合不起來,發音也有障礙。

文明通病 患者年紀層降低

顳顎關節症候群的病因很多,包含夜間磨牙、白天牙齒緊咬、長期用單邊吃東西、喜歡嚼硬的食物、長期頭頸部姿勢不良有可能,而近年顳顎關節症候群患者年齡層下降,可能跟現代人因工作、學業壓力大,使罹患顳顎關節症候群的人從過去的2、30歲,現在急降到16、7歲。

顳顎關節症候群 改善3要點

顳顎關節症候群這個名詞雖然很少人認識,但近年來已成為生活緊繃的人常發生的症狀,目前主要以3點來治療改善:

  1. 肌肉放鬆治療:壓力導致肌肉緊張及牙關緊咬,可以使用行為治療的方式,使肌肉保持放鬆,便可減緩症狀。
  2. 物理治療:熱敷、超音波、低周波電氣刺激(一種電療方法)等,可促進血液循環,減輕肌肉緊張及酸痛。
  3. 咬合板治療:咬合板是一種透明壓克力製作的治療工具,夜間睡眠時套在牙齒上,當夜間有磨牙或牙關咬緊的現象,可以像枴杖一樣提供支撐,保護已經受傷的顎關節,免於繼續受傷,增加癒合復原的機會。

預防顳顎關節症候群

顳顎關節症候群已成為都市文明病之一,正常的生活習慣、均衡飲食、規律運動、良好的咬合都有助於此症的預防及治療,許多不良習慣如咬嘴脣、頭頸姿勢不良等,都應加以改正。另外,睡眠不良容易導致牙關緊咬,也容易造成頭頸緊繃酸痛、張口困難,應盡量放鬆入眠。

提醒民眾,如果出現嘴巴張不開、咬合問題等疑似顳顎關節症候群症狀,要儘速求醫,以免病情惡化,導致治療困難,並且要記得顳顎關節症候群第一線的診療科別是牙科。

via 喀一聲嘴歪了!顳顎關節症候群作祟 | 20130723 | 華人健康網.

乳癌別「豆」了?什錦豆腐健康吃

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適當攝取新鮮的豆類製品可補充蛋白質,幫乳癌病友增加營養和活力,但應避免攝取高劑量的大豆異黃酮補充劑。

大豆製品的異黃酮素含量高,大量攝取會刺激乳癌細胞生長,讓許多乳癌患者擔憂不已,不過美國癌症研究院曾指出,適量食用天然大豆或豆製品,對乳癌病友不會有重大影響,需注意的是高劑量異黃酮補充劑。對此,國內營養師設計一道營養滿分的豆腐料理,幫助乳友補充活力沒負擔。

治療階段不同 飲食調整有必要

光田綜合醫院營養室主任林淑雯表示,乳癌患者的飲食照護,包括適當營養、足夠熱量和蛋白質、多蔬果和纖維質、少油低糖、減少攝取醃漬與加工食品,原則與健康人的飲食沒有太大差別,只是在不同治療階段,因應身體變化,需加強細部注意和改變。

舉例來說,化療和放療階段會產生嗅、味覺變化,患者常有不想吃的情況,此時烹調上可用糖、醋等天然調味料加強酸甜口感,幫助刺激食慾;出現口腔及消化道黏膜炎時,則避免粗糙生硬的食物及酒精飲料,以免造成刺激。

預後也不建議飲酒、食用動物性脂肪(牛油、豬油)及高脂肪食物(煎炸食物、豬腳、蹄膀),而且癌症患者的免疫力便差、腸道黏膜脆弱,不適合進補。

儲備抗癌體力 元氣料理力挺

營養滿分、色彩繽紛的香噴噴料理,向來是人類的心靈慰藉之一,尤其對乳癌患者而言,如何吃得健康、開心,更是決定能否繼續和病魔對抗的關鍵,因此林淑雯營養師設計2道低卡的營養料理,幫病友們補元氣,儲備抗癌的好體力。

【什錦豆腐】

  • 材料:板豆腐5小塊、胡蘿蔔100公克、木耳50公克、竹筍片50公克、肉片75公克、蔥及蒜頭各5公克、醬油1湯匙、鹽1/2茶匙、砂糖1湯匙、太白粉少許、橄欖油2湯匙。
  • 做法:
    1. 將豆腐切半,兩面煎黃,胡蘿蔔、木耳、蒜頭切片備用。
    2. 起油鍋,倒入橄欖油將蔥、蒜爆香,再放入胡蘿蔔、木耳及竹筍片炒熟,加入1/2碗清水,水滾時可放入調味料如醬油、鹽、砂糖調味,再加入煎黃的豆腐及豬肉片煮熟。
    3. 等湯收汁剩2/3量時,最後以太白粉水勾芡即可食用。
  • 熱量:5人份熱量共 685卡。
  • 特色:豆腐含有大豆蛋白,可增加蛋白質攝取,而異黃酮則為強抗氧化物質,使用強烈氣味的蔥蒜爆香,除了可增加香氣,還有降低膽固醇及抗凝血的保護作用。

【鮪魚沙拉】

  • 材料:鮪魚150公克、蛋2個、馬鈴薯180公克、小黃瓜兩條、胡蘿蔔120公克、沙拉醬1小包、胡椒粉及糖少許。
  • 做法:
    1. 將馬鈴薯去皮洗淨後切小丁塊,放入電鍋或蒸籠蒸煮約20~25分鐘,趁熟軟在搗成泥。
    2. 煮一鍋水將切丁胡蘿蔔煮熟撈起放涼,再將蛋煮熟後取出蛋白切丁備用。
    3. 將鮪魚水煮後將魚肉壓碎備用。
    4. 取大容器將鮪魚、馬鈴薯、胡蘿蔔、切丁蛋白及切片小黃瓜材料一起拌入,再倒入沙拉醬、胡椒粉及糖拌勻後即可盛盤食用。
  • 熱量:5人份熱量共770卡。
  • 特色:鮪魚含有豐富魚油可抗氧化,加入泥狀馬鈴薯可使口腔及消化道黏膜發炎患者容易進食,添加小黃瓜、胡蘿蔔等多色青菜可增加進食食慾。

via 乳癌別「豆」了?什錦豆腐健康吃 | 20130720 | 華人健康網.

輕食豆腐生菜沙拉 體內環保靠它

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輕食豆腐生菜沙拉,滿足你一餐的營養,大量的5色蔬果又能有效促進體內環保。(攝影/黃子倫)

盛夏輕食盛宴,便利商店中的生菜沙拉既快速,又方便大家計算熱量,是許多人想多吃蔬菜「體內環保」一下的選擇,但隨著陸續爆出的食安問題,也讓民眾擔心便利的背後,會不會有防腐劑殘留的威脅,營養師指出,想要吃得安心、低卡又營養,不妨自己動手做,分享一道「豆腐生菜沙拉」供夏日品嚐。

台安醫院營養課課長林子又營養師表示,一般市售的生菜沙拉普遍落在200~300大卡間,對於想要減肥的民眾,是相當方便攝取的輕食,但因為單吃生菜沙拉缺乏澱粉類,飽足感較差反而容易在一段時間後就感覺到飢餓,對於口腹之慾旺盛的減肥朋友來說,一不小心就失守,進而吃進更多的熱量。

而近期的食品安全問題,更衝擊民眾對市售包裝產品的信任,怕食品添加物如防腐劑會對身體帶來負擔,林子又營養師回應,想要吃得安心健康,「自己動手做」是不二法門,且對於沙拉這種可以發揮創意的無油煙料理,只要食材選的對,搭配自製的醬料,味道完全不輸市售產品,大量的5色蔬果又能「體內環保」一下。

林子又營養師也補充,輕食沙拉不是低卡就好,若一餐中只吃1份沙拉,包括豆類、澱粉類等也要顧及,營養才會均衡。分享一道「豆腐生菜沙拉」,熱量雖略高於一般沙拉來到422大卡,但裡面運用的食材如堅果類、豆類、澱粉類都能補充一天所需營養,讓你瘦得更健康。

豆腐生菜沙拉

【食材】:雞豆10g(18個)、玉米70g、青豆仁23g、涼薯25g、美生菜50g、小黃瓜20g(圓切)、胡蘿蔔10g、海帶芽0.2g、紫高麗5g、蕃茄40g、豆腐柳橙醬2大匙(豆腐80克、柳橙汁60CC、檸檬汁15CC、腰果22克、鹽2克)。

  1. 將雞豆泡水1~2小時,清洗,蒸熟備用。
  2. 涼薯去皮、小黃瓜洗淨,切成滾花片備用。
  3. 美生菜、玉米、青豆仁洗淨,美生菜切大片備用。
  4. 海帶芽洗淨泡水,與玉米、青豆仁放入滾水中川燙備用。
  5. 胡蘿蔔、紫高麗洗淨,刨成絲狀;番茄洗淨,切成滾刀片。
  6. 豆腐柳橙醬:將豆腐80克洗淨,煮熟,冷卻與柳橙汁60CC加檸檬汁15CC、腰果22克再加少許鹽等食材打成沙拉醬。
  7. 將所有的食材與豆腐柳橙醬均勻混和即可食用。

via 輕食豆腐生菜沙拉 體內環保靠它 | 20130723 | 華人健康網.

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